‘Top State Department officials Julieta Valis Noyes, discussing the US concerns with ISIS oil revenue, has revealed that the administration considers attacking oil pipelines in Syria a ‘viable’ military option.’
‘An investigation by the Senate Sergeant-at-Arms into CIA spying of Senate Intelligence Committee computers wrapped up this week without drawing any significant conclusions as a result of lost computer records reportedly deleted by the agency.’
‘Registered gun owners in the United Kingdom are now subject to unannounced visits to their homes under new guidance that allows police to inspect firearms storage without a warrant.
The new policy from the British Home Office went into effect Oct. 15, permitting police and constabularies to conduct surprise home visits to legitimate gun owners.’
‘In a surprise move late Friday, a key Democrat on the Federal Election Commission called for burdensome new rules on Internet-based campaigning, prompting the Republican chairman to warn that Democrats want to regulate online political sites and even news media like the Drudge Report.’
‘A scandal-ridden Catholic diocese in Italy where priests posted naked photos of themselves on gay websites, raided church coffers and sexually harassed parishioners is to be investigated by a special envoy to Pope Francis.
The Pope reportedly intends to send an ‘apostolic administrator’ to assess allegations that the diocese of Albenga-Imperia, in the Liguria region of northern Italy, has hosted a string of ‘playboy priests’ moon-lighting as barmen, stealing parish funds and getting tattooed.’
‘The days of candidates dominating their own political campaigns are over.
In the most competitive U.S. Senate races this year, big-money special interests that proliferated after the U.S. Supreme Court’s Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission decision are routinely out-muscling and out-messaging the candidates themselves.’
‘When, in January 2013, sitting in her Berlin flat, Laura Poitras received an anonymous email requesting her public encryption key (which would allow the sender secure communication), she says she thought little of it. As a filmmaker, Poitras had made documentaries about the American occupation in Iraq and Guantánamo Bay that had earned her international praise and numerous awards. They had also – so it seems – put her on an American government watch list that had resulted in her being detained going in and out of the country more than 40 times over six years. It was no secret that she was now working on a film about government surveillance.’
‘FBI Director James Comey continues to bang the drum about the evils of smartphone encryption and the harm it will do to U.S. law enforcement efforts. Fortunately, few people are persuaded, possibly because Comey himself seems of two minds — and baffled by technology to boot.’
‘Family members and friends of people killed in police custody held a march in central London to demand justice for their loved ones.
About 300 protesters took part in the annual procession by the United Families and Friends Campaign.
The demonstrators marched from Trafalgar Square to Downing Street.’
‘A study today says polling is ‘dangerously inefficient and seriously open to fraud’.
The findings were detailed in a report from Policy Exchange, a Westminster-based think-tank.
It called for an overhaul of the Electoral Commission and a new system of £80 fines for failing to register to vote.’
‘Prime Minister Steven Harper and the Canadian federal government are using the shooting rampage on Parliament Hill as a justification for imposing surveillance and detainment measures that they were already implementing and going forward with.
On October 22, 2014 a solitary gunman named Michael Zehaf-Bibeau (originally Michael Joseph Hall) from the city of Laval, Quebec went on a shooting spree in downtown Ottawa, the capital of Canada.’
‘Across the political and media elite in Australia, a silence has descended on the memory of the great, reforming prime minister Gough Whitlam, who has died. His achievements are recognized, if grudgingly, his mistakes noted in false sorrow. But a critical reason for his extraordinary political demise will, they hope, be buried with him.
Australia briefly became an independent state during the Whitlam years, 1972-75. An American commentator wrote that no country had ‘reversed its posture in international affairs so totally without going through a domestic revolution.”
‘Following widespread allegations of wrongdoing in both the Beijing and Sochi Olympics, human rights protections will be added to the contracts signed by future Olympic host cities. The International Olympic Committee’s president presented this change to Human Rights Watch at an October 21 meeting.’
‘Investigative journalist Laura Poitras says she is worried about intelligence agencies using the all-too-easily-accessible data gathered from social networks – as people share their personal information voluntarily and governments only need to ask.
Poitras, who helped NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden expose illegal activities of the organization, still believes that people should be worried about the amount of power governments have to conduct surveillance searches of what they are doing online.’
‘Last month, Omar Gonzalez, an Iraq War veteran from Texas, hopped the White House fence, overpowered a guard, and made it all the way into the East Room before he was apprehended by a Secret Service agent. Gonzalez had a knife on his person, and it soon emerged that he had previously been arrested in July, when state troopers in Virginia found semi-automatic weapons, sniper rifles, and a map of the White House in his car.’
‘The Queen has been told to ‘f*** off and die’ after she was targeted by Twitter trolls following her first official tweet.
The Queen, who in 1976 became the first monarch to send an email, welcomed visitors to the new Information Age gallery at the Science Museum in her first tweet.’
‘Cambridge University undergraduates are being offered cash bribes – to spy on science students who carry out experiments on animals.
Animal rights extremists are offering money in exchange for personal details, including names, addresses, pictures, phone numbers and emails of people involved in vivisection.’
‘For Mark Golub of Scripps College, this judgment can be seen as “a symbol of American racial Apartheid.” And why not? It rolled back many of the gains made through Reconstruction, most notably the Civil Rights Act of 1875, and established in rapid order the steps toward the disenfranchisement of Black voters.’
‘As analyst says the US government is increasingly becoming afraid of American citizens, with Washington describing most of them as ‘terrorists,’ Press TV reports.
Rodney Shakespeare, a political commentator, said in an interview with Press TV that the US police intend to curb the demands of the citizens in Missouri State, where people have been protesting police brutality, by resorting to ‘guns, machine guns, tasers, drones, helicopters and an absolute spying system.”